16 Exeter is located on the SE corner of Exeter and Marlborough, with 199 Marlborough to the north, across Marlborough, 18 Exeter to the south, 194 Marlborough to the east, and 220-224 Marlborough to the west, across Exeter.
16 Exeter (196 Marlborough) was designed by architect William Whitney Lewis and built in 1886 by James Smith and William Wood, builders, for Dr. Edwin Perley Bradbury, a dentist, and his wife, Louisa Silsby (Jordan) Bradbury. They previously had lived at 124 Commonwealth.
Edwin Bradbury is shown as the owner of 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough) on the original building permit application, dated April 13, 1886. He purchased the land on February 20, 1886, from attorney William Sohier Dexter. It was part of a larger lot running from Marlborough to the alley that William Dexter had purchased on October 20, 1885, from Henry Lee Higginson and Alexander Agassiz, who had purchased it from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on February 25, 1873.
William Dexter’s lot had a frontage of 54 feet on Marlborough and 112 feet on Exeter. 194 Marlborough, to the east, had been built in 1881 by N. Henry Chadwick and Oscar Stillings, and on February 10, 1886, they sold William Dexter a six inch strip of land with the western half of the party wall on it so that the wall could be used for the house to be built at 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough). William Dexter combined the strip with his lot and sold Edwin Bradbury the northern portion, with a frontage of 54 feet 6 inches on Marlborough and 66 feet on Exeter, and built his own home on the southern portion at 18 Exeter, with a frontage of 46 feet on Exeter.
Click here for an index to the deeds for 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough), and click here for further information about the land between the south side of Marlborough and Alley 425, from Dartmouth to Exeter.
Edwin and Louisa Bradbury lived at 16 Exeter and he maintained his dental office at 196 Marlborough, with a separate entrance. From about 1888 to about 1890, Dr. Elliot B. Bacheller, another dentist, also lived at 16 Exeter and maintained his office at 196 Marlborough
In 1892, the Bradburys bought a home, Cedar Knoll, on Lexington Street in Weston. They moved there (where he continued to practice dentistry) but continued to own 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough), maintaining his Boston dental office there and leasing the rest of the house to others. It remained both a residence and dental offices.
During the 1892-1893 winter season, 16 Exeter was the home of Elizabeth Gardiner (Stone) Bacon, the wife of William Benjamin Bacon, Jr. He was retired manager of the New England Electric Light Company and may have been traveling in Europe (on April 23, 1892, he acted as second in a duel between Edward Fox and Hallett Alsop Borrows in Brussels). Their primary residence was in Lenox.
By the 1893-1894 winter season, 16 Exeter was the home of Anne Pearson (Lunt) Frothingham, the widow of Thomas Bumstead Frothingham, and their two youngest children, Anne Gorham Frothingham and Louis Adams Frothingham (a student at Harvard Law School at the time, who later would become Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, Lt. Governor, and a US Congressman). They had lived in an apartment at The Grosvenor at 259 Beacon in 1892. By the 1895-1896 season, they had moved to 29 Gloucester.
By the 1895-1896 winter season, 16 Exeter was the home of investment banker Edward Warren Rollins and his wife, Clara Harriet (Sherwood) Rollins. They previously had lived at the Hotel Brunswick (southeast corner of Clarendon and Boylston) and before that in Denver, where his investment firm was located. They continued to live at 16 Exeter during the 1896-1897 winter season, but moved thereafter. By 1900 they had divorced; he was living in Denver and she was living in Wood River, Illinois, with her mother, Harriet Abbot (Wilson) Sherwood, the widow of William Keeler Sherwood.
During the 1897-1898 winter season, 16 Exeter was the home of John Irving Taylor and his wife, Helen (Burnap) Taylor, and Charles Henry Hooke and his wife, Cornelia (Burnap) Hooke. Helen Taylor and Cornelia Hooke were sisters. Both couples had lived at The Abbotsford, at 184-188 Commonwealth, in 1897.
John Taylor was affiliated with the Boston Globe, owned by his father. From 1903 to 1911, he owned the American League baseball team in Boston and is credited with choosing the name “Red Socks.” He built Fenway Park, which opened in April of 1912 (at which time the team’s name changed to “Red Sox”). Charles Hooke was cashier of the Globe National Bank. In 1899 the bank failed as a result of the “misappropriations” of its president.
By about 1899, the Taylors had moved to Brookline and the Hookes had moved to the Hotel Bellevue at 21-23 Beacon.
By the 1899-1900 winter season, 16 Exeter was the home of Dr. George Holmes Bixby, a physician. He was a widower. His daughter, Mary Alison Bixby, and his sister, Emma Adaline (Bixby) Vermyne, the widow of Dr. John J. B. Vermyne, lived with him. They all previously had lived at 503 Beacon. Mrs. Vermyne also maintained a home in New Bedford.
Alison Bixby married in June of 1900 to Edward Burlingame Hill, a composer and music teacher, and later a professor of music at Harvard. After their marriage, they moved to 321 Beacon. Dr. Bixby moved to live with them (he died in February of 1901), and Mrs. Vermyne moved to The Cambridge at 483 Beacon.
By the 1900-1901 winter season, 16 Exeter was the home of tea importer and merchant Henry E. Raymond and his wife, Susan Antoinette (Murdock) Raymond. They previously had lived in Brookline.
On June 10, 1903, 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough) was purchased from Edwin Bradbury by Dr. T. Otis Loveland, also a dentist. The Bradburys moved to California, and Dr. Loveland, who lived in Newton, moved his dental office to 196 Marlborough.
The Raymonds continued to live at 16 Exeter in 1907, but had moved to the Hotel Vendome by the 1907-1908 winter season.
By the 1907-1908 winter season, 16 Exeter was the home of Charles Theodore Russell and his wife, Louise (Rust) Russell. They previously had lived in the Longwood district of Brookline. Charles Russell was assistant treasurer of the Boston Wharf Company until 1914, after which he was a trustee and real estate dealer. They continued to live at 16 Exeter during the 1908-1909 season, but moved thereafter to 182 Marlborough.
In 1909, 16 Exeter became the fraternity house of the MIT chapter of Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity. It previously had been located at 282 Dartmouth. Phi Sigma Kappa continued to be located at 16 Exeter until the 1916-1917 winter season, when it moved to 517 Beacon.
16 Exeter was not listed in the 1918-1920 Blue Books. 196 Marlborough continued to be medical offices.
By 1920, 16 Exeter was the sorority house of the Zeta Phi Eta sorority of Emerson College. It continued to be located there until 1924, when it moved to 365 Marlborough.
On August 16, 1921, 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough) was acquired from T. Otis Loveland by Dr. Horace Leonard Howe, a dentist and professor at Harvard Dental School. He had maintained his dental offices at 196 Marlborough since 1907. He and his wife, Alice (Boardman) Howe, lived in Brookline.
By 1923, 16 Exeter also was the home of Francis (Frank) Eben Handy and his wife, Mary Grace (Foster) Handy. The Handys had lived in Winthrop in 1920 and he had been an officer in a jail. When they moved to 16 Exeter, he listed his occupation as “engineer,” and it appears that he and his wife managed the property at 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough). They continued to live there until about 1928.
In February of 1927, Horace Howe applied for (and subsequently received) permission to repair fire damage to 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough), and in May of 1927, he applied for (and subsequently received) permission to remodel the property. He indicated that the current and proposed use of the property was as dental offices and a dormitory.
By 1930, 16 Exeter had been leased to Kappa Phi Alpha fraternity of Bentley College. Mrs. Alice N. Haskell, a widow, also lived there and was the housekeeper for the fraternity. Kappa Phi Alpha continued to be located there in 1932.
By 1934, it was the home of Mrs. Lucy Erline Clinton (Hardy) Choate, the former wife of George Warren Choate, who operated it as a lodging house. She previously had lived at 37 Commonwealth. She continued to live at 16 Exeter until about 1943.
By 1944, 16 Exeter was the home of Eunice R. Jones, who operated it as a lodging house. She previously had lived in Brookline. She continued to live (and operate a lodging house) at 16 Exeter until about 1948, when she and several of the lodgers at 16 Exeter moved to 382 Marlborough.
Throughout the 1930s and 1940s, 196 Marlborough remained offices.
Horace Howe died in February of 1941, and 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough) was inherited by his wife, Alice (Boardman) Howe. On July 3, 1946, she transferred it to their son, Dr. Henry Dunster Howe, a dentist like his father, who maintained his office at 196 Marlborough. He had married in February of 1946 to Eunice P. Simm and they lived in Brookline.
On September 16, 1946, Henry Howe transferred 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough) to himself and his wife as trustees of the 196 Marlboro Street Trust.
In August of 1948, the trust filed for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property from a single-family dwelling and five dental offices into four apartments and five dental offices.
Henry Howe died in January of 1982.
On March 16, 1983, 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough) was purchased from Eunice Howe by Richard G. Cox.
On September 5, 1984, 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough) was purchased from Richard Cox by real estate dealer Charles M. Talanian, as trustee of the 16 Exeter Street Realty Trust. In July of 1984, prior to taking title to the property, Charles Talanian filed for (and subsequently received) permission to add three floors over an existing courtyard and to convert the property into offices and four apartments.
On August 3, 1992, Charles Talanian transferred 16 Exeter (196 Marlborough) to himself and his wife, Jane Ann (Abdella) Chapman Talanian.
On March 6, 1995, the Talanians converted the property into four condominiums, the Bradbury House Condominium, with two units entered from 16 Exeter and the other two from 196 Marlborough. One of the two units (“Unit 196”) was designated as “non-residential.”
In December of 1995, Charles Talanian filed for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property from two offices and four residential units into one office and three residential units, conforming it to the condominium master deed. On February 16, 1996, the Bradbury House Condominium amended the master deed to change the designation of Unit 196 from “non-residential” to “residential.” And in March of 1996, Thomas Brennan filed for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property into four residential units, thereby conforming the legal occupancy with the existing condition.